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Digital Modernization

Agencies Slow to Transition to Web-Based Forms, Think Tank Says

Digital modernization

Agencies Slow to Transition to Web-Based Forms, Think Tank Says

Some federal government agencies are not fully compliant with a law mandating them to transition from paper to web-based forms, according to a report published by a public policy think tank.

The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation reported that agencies missed multiple deadlines set by the 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act.

Congress enacted 21st Century IDEA in 2018 in an effort to improve citizen experience, build public trust, improve service and convenience and reduce costs.

The legislation required executive agencies to switch to accessible, mobile-friendly, web-based forms within two years.

21st Century IDEA also directed agency leaders to submit a plan to accelerate the adoption of electronic signatures to Congress and the director of the Office of Management and Budget.

ITIF added that OMB missed its own deadline to issue guidance on the modernization of government websites and forms.

The think tank said that some agencies opted not to report their progress in digitizing forms as the legislation had no such requirement.

The departments of Housing and Urban Development, the Interior and Justice were among the agencies that did not include the said information in their annual reports.

ITIF said it conducted its own analysis of a random sample of 1,348 forms and found that 78 percent were partially compliant. Only 2 percent were fully compliant.

The think tank recommended that Congress hold a series of oversight hearings to determine the agencies’ progress and identify barriers in their modernization efforts.

Congress should direct the Government Accountability Office to perform compliance audits if it is found that the agencies have not made enough progress, ITIF added.

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Category: Digital Modernization

Tags: 21st Century IDEA Department of the Interior digital modernization DoJ federal government GAO Government Accountability Office HUD Information Technology and Innovation Act ITIF Office of Management and Budget OMB web-based forms